I agree with what you are saying. However, there is a large portion of our
society that seems to feel that, by the mere action of becoming soldiers,
soldiers sacrifice all right to have a voice in these matters. This
philosophy holds that soldiers go where they're told to go, do what they're
told to do, and if they don't like it or believe it isn't right, then just
too bad. I once read a commentator who said that for a soldier to refuse
to fight when he was told to fight would be the same as if he went out and
started shooting people when there was no war going on. The fallacy with
this logic is that it assumes that there is no moral difference between war
Peace and Unity,
At 05:37 AM 9/3/00 GMT, you wrote:
>From: Gary K. Shepherd 29 Aug 2000
>>... I was a little disturbed by the statement that non-veterans were 'more
>>responsible' for the war than veterans.
>>I am more than aware that soldiers do not act alone in committing warfare,
>>of course, but that doesn't mean they do not share some of the
>>The tendency to reduce soldiers to mere victims of the
>>militarist-nationalist system is a negative message...
>This misses the point. By the time we have troops on the ground fighting,
>certainly the soldiers bear the brunt of the culpability for the details of
>how the war is carried out by them, but the reason they are there is because
>some chair warmers (who don't have to face the enemy) sent them. Would a
>representative sampling of WW2 and Korean war veterans have agreed that we
>need to fight the Vietnam war?
>Remember also that in the US, the military is (theoretically) answerable to
>congress -the will of the people. The military doesn't order itself to go to
>war. Despite the power of the Pentagon to manipulate things so they have a
>mandate to fight a war that only the military-industrialists want, the
>decision makers themselves aren't the ones in the mud. As I said, chair
>The way I took the Monks' comments was that the veterans of past wars have a
>message, and the People aren't listening to them. The veterans would
>probably say that almost nothing short of a deathly serious threat to our
>direct freedom is sufficient reason to go to war. The chair warmers might
>say that our stock market profits are threatened by the bad guy's actions,
>so we want the military to fix it for us.
>The people are more concerned with the cost of eggs, or what options to put
>in the new SUV. Every Veteran's day, some of the newspapers print stories
>about local vets and their experiences, and some tripe about how valuable
>these lessons are, but the next day the people and the media are more
>concerned with the love lives of the stars.
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